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Irena Sendler passed away on Monday May 12th, 2008 at 8:00 am CEST in Warsaw, Poland. A funeral service will be held on Thursday, May 15th at noon CEST in Warsaw. Memorial services are planned in numerous places, including Fort Scott, KS.
The life of Irena Sendler was one of great testimony, one of courage and love, one of respect for all people, regardless of race, religion and creed. She passed away peacefully, knowing that her message goes on. Our hearts and prayers go out to her worldwide family. She is gone, but will never be forgotten. Born in Warsaw, Poland, she live most of her young life in Otwock. Irena Sendlerowa led the rescue of 2,500 Jewish children from the Warsaw Ghetto during the Holocaust in World War II. She was recently nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize. Her legacy of repairing the world continues, as good continues to triumph over evil. Irena Sendlerowa was 98 years old.
Irena (code name Jolanta) was arrested on October 20, 1943. When arrested she felt almost liberated. She was placed in the notorious Piawiak prison, where she was constantly questioned and tortured. During the questioning she had her legs and feet fractured.
The German who interrogated her was young, very stylish and spoke perfect Polish. He wanted the names of the Zegota leaders, their addresses and the names of others involved. Irena fed him the version that she and her collaborators had prepared in the event they were captured.
The German held up a folder with information of places, times and persons who had informed on her. She received a death sentence. She was to be shot. Unbeknown to her, Zegota had bribed the German executioner who helped her escape. On the following day the Germans loudly proclaimed her execution. Posters were put up all over the city with the news that she was shot. Irena read the posters herself.